I know this will sound cheesy, but this little rose is a lot like my mom. My mother was resilient. Frankie was determined to survive. Even when placed in adverse situations she flourished. She was able to rise above so many set backs in her life. My little rose is a beautiful reminder to me of her fortitude and strength. In some ways it reminders of her personality as well. Frankie was spunk, bright, and stubborn. I wish you all could have met her, she was really amazing.
We had heard about the orchard but had never been. It did not take us long to realize that Apple Valley Orchard is in the middle of nowhere. We were nervous we had the wrong directions since we kept driving deeper and deeper into rural Bradley County. Then, all the sudden, we came across a white building swarming with people.
Apple Valley is apple heaven. Apple sauce, apple butter, apple fritters, apple pie, apple cider and more! It is an adorable little country store full of all kinds of goodies. After pursuing the shop and eating our pastries we picked out our apples and head back to town. We were having so much fun shopping local, we decided to swing by the Ocoee Winery. Unfortunately, Bradley county residents make better apple cider than wine. But, at least they are trying.
Once at home we peeled and cored our peck of apples and started the process of making homemade apple butter. The apple butter is still cooking in the crock pot, but if it taste half as good as it smells it is going to be divine. Sunday was a wonderful day to live in Cleveland, TN.
Ps. Blue kernel popcorn looks like regular popcorn when it pops. We bought some at the orchard because we thought it would pop blue (I realize now how dumb this sounds). We got so excited when it started popping. As the kernels started to opening we felt like kids who had just realized Santa wasn’t real. Are we the only people to think blue kernels means blue popcorn?
The Swell Season consist of the two lead actors from the movie, Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova. I would describe it as indie rock mixed with a little folk. It is incredible. The concert was amazing. We knew it was going to be great when Glen strolled out on stage with worn out guitar and performed the opening song from the movie without an amp or microphone. It was phenomenal! Also, they talked a lot. I know some people hate this, but I love the insight you gain from hearing them share about their music. Hansard did most the talking, he explained his songs as well as showed his very funny, very Irish sense of humor. Below is a clip of them performing live, complete with Hansard's humor. For those of you who haven't see the movie he is basically re-telling the plot, this why everyone is laughing.
Nashville is EXACTLY what we expected. Live music everywhere. Broadway was a flood of country music. I think there was a street performer on every corner. As for the Ryman, the history of the auditorium is amazing. It was built by a wealthy business man as an evangelism center for a tent revival preacher. Slowly, because of mounting debit, it was turned into a musical hall. Some of the most famous names in country music have performed on the stage. Despite all the great history, I am going to have to agree Ryan Adams. In an interview Adams called the Ryman a "shit-hole." After sitting for four hours on the wooden benches, trying to see around the poles, and being completely distracted every time anyone in the 3,000 seat venue moved I agree with Adams. Interesting history, but a crappie place to watch a concert.
Oh and one more thing . . . Bill Callahan sucks. He was the opening act and I think that watching paint dry would have been more interesting. He stood completely still and sang long drawn out songs that all sounded alike. The only upside was his drummer. He was insanely animated and made the show almost tolerable.
Jason and I are blessed because we really don’t use our vehicles much. Most days we are able to bike or walk to work. I have been putting off getting gas in my car for two weeks but due to a concert tonight in Nashville (more about that later), I had to fill up. OUCH! How are you people who have to commute not totally broke? Seriously, it is awful. The worst part is that it cost 4 times as much to fill up my 10 gallon tank as it did 10 years ago when I started driving! Remember $.99 a gallon gas? Now I am just happy when I can get gas for under $4 a gallon. Sigh. I really hope that the concert will be worth the money we are spending on gas to get there.
Ps. I wish had video from the first day of class so you could see the improvement. Now we just need to get her to stop jumping on people and licking their toes. Once we break those habits she will be a perfect little puppy!
This morning Cleveland Utilities came out to trim the branches around the power lines on my street. Not long after they got there Miss Mary came strolling down the street in her pajamas. About the time she saw them she began screaming "You white mother f#%kers, I am tired of this shit." The guys just stopped and watched her cussing them out. I think she catches people so off guard that they cannot be angry at her. I bet these guys are going to have the best stories when they get home about their time working on Walker Street.
Today is quite possibly one of my favorite days of the year, it is the first day of autumn! I always like living in Tennessee but I love it when fall rolls around. In my opinion there is nothing more magical and romantic than beautifully colored leaves falling from the sky.
This is a dogwood tree on the corner of 1st and Broad Street (downtown Cleveland). While it is mostly green there are few leaves that have already started to turn a beautiful scarlet. It was so pretty that I had to share it with everyone on this lovely first day of autumn.
Okay, I am the first to admit that this video is a little boring. Actually, you can hear me in the video asking Jason to wrap it up. She stayed several times over 6 minutes, but I would not want to make anyone watch that. I just wanted to show everyone that Ann can listen. If she does half this good in class tomorrow we will be thrilled.
What did Prissy do this morning while Ann worked hard? She sat on her throne and ruled the house as always. What else would you expect from the princess?
Shelden Edwards’ debut novel spins a dizzying tale of elaborate fiction intertwined with historical facts. It took Edwards 30 years to finish The Little Book, which at almost 400 pages is nowhere near little. The book is centered around the unexplained time travel of the central character, Wheeler Burden. Burden awakes to find himself in 1897 Vienna, 50 years before his birth.
I usually find books with extreme far flung premises annoying and hard to swallow. However, Edwards writes with such depth and detail that you find yourself swept up in the tale. At some point in reading the book you stop trying to understand the intricacies and enjoy the odd twisted story. The novel explores everything from love, family dynamics, pacifism, Antisemitism, psychology and the arts. Even with this impressive list of topics, Edwards makes the The Little Book an amusing read that is the perfect way to round out the summer reading season. --Jaime for The Bradley News Weekly
Look for "The Little Book" on Amazon
Beautiful Lengths partners with the American Cancer Society to make wigs available to women who have cancer. My mother passed away last year from brain cancer. Early in her sickness one of the biggest hurdles for her was hair loss. Hair is a woman's glory, losing it is devastating. My mom was no exception. She tried to put off cutting it. Finally, when large clumps kept coming out, she asked me to shave it. It was so hard to remove the remaining portion of her hair.
Right after shaving her head she went to the American Cancer Society Wig bank and received a free wig. When I found out that I could donate my hair to make wigs for women who were in the same place as my mom, I knew I had no choice.
I am still adjusting to the shock of the hair cut, but I feel certain that I made the right choice.
PS I would like to note that my mother only wore the Wig Bank wig for a couple of weeks. She was not completely happy with the color. She convinced my sister to take her to wig shop in Orlando and by her one (their selection was a bit larger than the Wig Bank). Throughout her illness the American Cancer Society was a huge support to our family. I am happy to support them even if my mom was a little too picky for their wigs :).
Here are few questions I asked this morning.
- Have you heard of Cleveland, TN? Cleveland, TN: Population in July 2007: 39,190. Population change since 2000: +4.1%, 28.6 miles from Chattanooga, TN.
- Should I start using Twitter? Absolutely. I've heard so many great things about this from friends that are using it. It really is revolutionary. Check it out
- How much has Obama and McCain spent on their campaigns to date? McCain is near $144 million, while Obama is at $312 million. Keep the questions coming!
Please share a question and answer in the comment section!!
Also, I am posting a photo (not a very good one) of a gas station in town (the corner of Keith and Inman) with $4.99 gas! Price gouging anyone?? It is a suckie day to be poor. I guess Jason and won't be going anywhere tonight unless we can get there on our bikes :).
So maybe you are like me and your idea of bluegrass was shaped by the movie "Deliverance" and you are a bit skeptical about finding something in the genre that you can actually enjoy without giving you the creeps. Or perhaps you are an avid Bluegrass listener who has more than one CD entitled "instrumental banjo,” either way, the latest album by Blue Highway as one-size-fits-all bluegrass extravaganza.
The masterful and diverse instrumentation throughout this album will have you tapping your toes and chewing springs of hay in no time. Combine the playing with soft vocals light on the twang and you have “Through the Window of a Train” -- an album that appeals well beyond the typical Bluegrass listener. Whether looking for another “pickin’ and grinnin’” CD or simply wanting to expand the ol' musical horizon, “Through the Window of a Train” by Blue Highway would be a great place to start.
Not sure if you are heady to drop dough for the album? Watch them live first at Chattanooga's ThreeSisters Music Festival on October 4th.
Written for the Bradley News Weekly, published in September 19th by Jason Barks
This is Lionel Bass. Lionel works for Broad Street United Methodist (they give Habitat office space in their building). It does not matter if it is day or night, Lionel can always be heard coming down the hall wishing everyone a "Good mornin'." Even if you are having a bad day of a day you cannot help but smile when you hear Lionel coming. Hope everyone has a good mornin'.